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Events at the Mechanics' Institute

First Tuesday TED Talk
Tuesday, September 02, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

1st Tuesday TED Talk Discussion

Jared Diamond: How societies can grow old better

Bring your lunch and curiosity to talk about ideas, stories, and concepts with fellow Mechanics’ Institute members and staff.

Members Only - Free
No registration required
More information
No registration required.

Activities
Tuesday, September 02, 2014 - 6:00pm

Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Ireland’s Gothic History

A talk by Dr. Deaglán Ó Donghaile

Join Dr. Ó Donghaile as he explores Bram Stoker's understanding of Irish history and culture, how they inspired the author's gothic imagination, and how these issues can help us to understand more about a novel that remains hugely popular today.

Members Free
Members of the Irish Literary and Historical Society Free
Public $15

Classes
Wednesday, September 03, 2014 - 6:00pm

After Six: Chess for Adults

Did you learn how to move the chess pieces as a child? Would you like to learn more? This class is for you!

Members $40
Public $50

Activities
Thursday, September 04, 2014 - 6:00pm

Abraham Lincoln’s Path to Reelection in 1864: Our Greatest Victory

A lecture and book presentation by Fred J. Martin, Jr.

Join us as Fred J. Martin presents his new book and illuminates Lincoln's tremendous 1864 victory, his oversight of the national reconstruction, and the political genius that reignited the ideals of freedom, and saved democratic government.

Members Free
Members of San Francisco Civil War Roundtable, Abraham Lincoln Institute, or the Abraham Lincoln Association Free
Public $15

CinemaLit Films
Friday, September 05, 2014 - 6:00pm

Melvin and Howard (1980)

September 2014 - Critic’s Choice: Classic and Quirky Americana

The wry, wistful and possibly true story of a likable loser who claimed to be Howard Hughes’ heir, and his ambitious wife, gets to the heart of the American dream.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, September 08, 2014 - 12:00pm

The Gods of Guilt

by Michael Connelly

Mickey Haller gets the text, "Call me ASAP - 187," the California penal code for murder immediately gets his attention. When Mickey learns that the victim was his own former client, a prostitute he thought he had rescued and put on the straight and narrow path, he knows he is on the hook for this one.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Proust - In Search of Lost Time
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 5:30pm

The Proust Group

"In Search of Lost Time"

Now is the perfect time to join the Proust Society of America at the Mechanics’ Institute! The new semester, and the beginning of a new 3-year cycle examining Marcel Proust’s masterpiece In Search of Lost Time, will start on September 10th.

Members $70
Public $100

Meet the Author(s)
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 6:00pm

The Lotus and the Storm

Author Lan Cao in conversation with Andrew Lam

Family mysteries unfold in Lan Cao’s sweeping, lyrical novel about war and its casualties.

Members of Mechanics' Institute Free
Members of Asia Society Free
Friends of New America Media Free
Public $15

Book Group Meetings - Proust - World Literature
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 - 6:45pm

The World Literature Group

Anthony and Cleopatra, Civil War, Confessions, Inferno, Rameau’s Nephew, & Julie, or the New Heloise

Under the leadership of SFSU lecturer, Dr. Mark Calkins, the Mechanics’ Institute offers bi-weekly Proust discussion groups on a semester basis.

Members $70
Public $100

Classes
Thursday, September 11, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Navigating the New Value Line Database

Value Line has redesigned its platform, moving to a more dynamic, digitally-based product with many new features and new content to assist in making investment decisions. Learn how the new design makes greater usage of lists for site navigation, and indicates more clearly the factors that users are most interested in.

Members Only - Free

CinemaLit Films
Friday, September 12, 2014 - 6:00pm

M (1951)

September 2014 - Critic’s Choice: Classic and Quirky Americana

A child-killer is pursued by the police in this taut film noir that relocates Fritz Lang’s dark yarn from Berlin to Los Angeles.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Book Group Meetings - Fiction You Wish You Had Read
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - 12:00pm

When the Emperor Was Divine

by Julie Otsuka

On a sunny day in Berkeley, California, in 1942, a woman sees a sign in a post office window, returns to her home, and matter-of-factly begins to pack her family's possessions. Like thousands of other Japanese Americans they have been reclassified, virtually overnight, as enemy aliens and are about to be uprooted from their home and sent to a dusty internment camp in the Utah desert.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Literature in Brief - Short Stories
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 - 5:30pm

Vampires in the Lemon Grove

by Karen Russell

From the author of the novel Swamplandia! comes a magical and uniquely daring collection of stories that showcases the author's gifts at their inimitable best.

Members Only - Free

Meet the Author(s)
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - 12:30pm

Thirteen Days in September

An afternoon with author Lawrence Wright

The award-winning author of The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11, offers an illuminating day-by-day account of the 1978 Camp David conference, when President Jimmy Carter convinced Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to sign a peace treaty.

Members and Their Guests Only - Free

Classes
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Library Downloads Workshop: eBook, eMagazine, eAudiobook

During this workshop, you’ll set up your accounts, check out titles, and get all your questions answered. 

Members Only - Free
No registration required
More information
No registration required.

Meet the Author(s)
Thursday, September 18, 2014 - 6:00pm

Mona Lisa: A Life Discovered

An evening with author Dianne Hales

When new findings identified Leonardo’s model as Lisa Gherardini del Giocondo, award winning author Diane Hales was intrigued and set out to reconstruct Lisa’s life, taking a journey throughout Italy--to archives and libraries, piazze and palazzi, abandoned chapels, and fairytale castles. The result of her extensive research is a blend of biography, history, and memoir that introduces us an enigmatic woman who lived during Florence’s golden age.

Members of Mechanics' Institute Free
Members of Humanities West Free
Members of Leonardo da Vinci Society Free
Public $15

Book Group Meetings - Forgotten Classics
Thursday, September 18, 2014 - 6:00pm

The Museum of Innocence

by Orhan Pamuk

It is 1975, a perfect spring in Istanbul. Kemal and Sibel, children of two prominent families, are about to become engaged. But when Kemal encounters Fusun, a beautiful shopgirl and a distant relation, he becomes enthralled. And once they violate the code of virginity, a rift begins to open between Kemal and the world of the Westernized Istanbul bourgeoisie. In his pursuit of Fusun over the next eight years, Kemal becomes a compulsive collector of objects that chronicle his lovelorn progress--amassing a museum that is both a map of a society and of his heart.

Members Only - Free

CinemaLit Films
Friday, September 19, 2014 - 6:00pm

Bedside (1934)

September 2014 - Critic’s Choice: Classic and Quirky Americana

A charming cad passes himself off as a Park Avenue surgeon in this breakneck-paced pre-Code saga rife with drugs, sex, and medical malpractice.

Members Free
Public $10 (suggested donation)

Classes
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 - 10:00am to 4:00pm

Tech Office Hours

One-on-one technology consultations

Reserve a half hour with our tech experts to get assistance with your technology questions.

Members Only - Free
Registration required (see description for info)

Classes
Thursday, September 25, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Gale Business Insights: Essentials

Learn to research and analyze companies to obtain competitor intelligence and access in-depth industry profiles using this database.

Members Only - Free

Activities
Friday, September 26, 2014 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm

Book'toberfest 2014

A book industry trade show and craft beer tasting

Come hoist a stein with fellow book lovers and our Mechanics’ Institute members who are involved in the publishing industry! If you are a reader, writer, or beer connoisseur, you’ll love the creative vibe, selection of locally crafted beer, and plethora of new books coming out by local writers and small publishers.

Members Free
Public $15

Activities
Tuesday, September 30, 2014 - 8:00pm

Shoplifter

A Discussion with Michael Cho and Chip Kidd
Member of Mechanics' Institute $15
Member of Jewish Community Center San Francisco $15
Member of Cartoon Museum $15
Member of Asia Society $15
Member of California College of Art $15
Public $25

Classes
Wednesday, October 01, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Taking the Fear Out of Estate Planning

With planned-giving expert Phil Murphy

An up-to-date estate plan puts you in control of the economical and efficient distribution of what you own to those you love. Planned-giving expert Phil Murphy will teach you about the power of estate planning and what free estate-planning tools are available to you through your membership at the Mechanics’ Institute.

Members Only - Free
Registration required (see description for info)

Classes
Thursday, October 02, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Navigating the New Value Line Database

Value Line has redesigned its platform, moving to a more dynamic, digitally-based product with many new features and new content to assist in making investment decisions. Learn how the new design makes greater usage of lists for site navigation, and indicates more clearly the factors that users are most interested in.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, October 06, 2014 - 12:00pm

Dark Fire: A Matthew Shardlake Tudor Mystery

by C. J. Sansom

In 1540, during the reign of Henry VIII, Shardlake is asked to help a young girl accused of murder. She refuses to speak in her defense even when threatened with torture. But just when the case seems lost, Thomas Cromwell, the king's feared vicar general, offers Shardlake two more weeks to prove his client's innocence. In exchange, Shardlake must find a lost cache of "Dark Fire," a legendary weapon of mass destruction.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

First Tuesday TED Talk
Tuesday, October 07, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

1st Tuesday TED Talk Discussion

David Epstein: Are athletes really getting faster, better, stronger?

Bring your lunch and curiosity to talk about ideas, stories, and concepts with fellow Mechanics’ Institute members and staff.

Members Only - Free
No registration required
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Tuesday, October 07, 2014 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Identity Theft Prevention

Learn how to protect yourself from identity theft.

Members Only - Free

Classes
Wednesday, October 08, 2014 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Excel: Beyond the Basics

Learn to create a simple chart; import data from an external source; and sort, filter, & format data.

Members Only - Free

Activities
Wednesday, October 08, 2014 - 6:00pm

Four Immigrants Manga: A Japanese Experience in San Francisco, 1904-1924

A talk with translator Fred Schodt

Henry Yoshitaka Kiyama arrived in San Francisco from Japan in 1904, at the age of 19. He studied fine art at the city's Art Institute, but in 1931 wound up publishing what is arguably America's first graphic novel, perhaps even its first "comic book." Join Mechanics’ Institute member Fred Schodt for an updated talk on this remarkable book, which is attracting more and more attention among both scholars and comic book fans.

Members of Mechanics' Institute Free
Public $15

Classes
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Discovering the Library’s Collections

Learn how to search for and find materials in the library's collection, manage your library account online, and access the library's databases from home.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Fiction You Wish You Had Read
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 - 12:00pm

The Catcher in the Rye

by J. D. Salinger

Through circumstances that tend to preclude adult, secondhand description, Holden Caulfield leaves his prep school in Pennsylvania and goes underground in New York City for three days. The boy himself is at once too simple and too complex for us to make any final comment about him or his story. Perhaps the safest thing we can say about Holden is that he was born in the world not just strongly attracted to beauty but, almost, hopelessly impaled on it.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Classes
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Discovering the Library’s Collections

Learn how to search for and find materials in the library's collection, manage your library account online, and access the library's databases from home.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Literature in Brief - Short Stories
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 - 5:30pm

A Better Angel

by Chris Adrian

The stories in A Better Angel describe the terrain of human suffering — illness, regret, mourning, sympathy — in the most unusual of ways, from an author heralded for his wit and inventiveness.

Members Only - Free

Classes
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm

Eventbrite

See a demonstration of the Eventbrite registration process & learn how to sign up for events on the library's public computers or from your home.

Members Only - Free

Classes
Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 12:00pm to 1:30pm

Investment Information on the Web

Learn how to access free and authoritative investment information focused on publicly traded companies, covering stocks, mutual funds, and industry surveys.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, November 10, 2014 - 12:00pm

The Lady in the Lake

by Raymond Chandler

A couple of missing wives—one a rich man's and one a poor man's—become the objects of (Philip) Marlowe's investigation. One of them may have gotten a Mexican divorce and married a gigolo and the other may be dead. Marlowe's not sure he cares about either one, but he's not paid to care.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Fiction You Wish You Had Read
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 - 12:00pm

Things Fall Apart

by Chinua Achebe

Achebe's first novel portrays the collision of African and European cultures in people's lives. Okonkwo, a great man in Igbo traditional society, cannot adapt to the profound changes brought about by British colonial rule. Yet, as in classic tragedy, Okonkwo's downfall results from his own character as well as from external forces.

Members Only - Free
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Literature in Brief - Short Stories
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 - 5:30pm

The Dog of the Marriage

by Amy Hempel

The Dog of the Marriage, Amy Hempel's fourth collection, is about sexual obsession, relationships gone awry, and the unsatisfied longings of everyday life.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Forgotten Classics
Thursday, November 20, 2014 - 6:00pm

Remembrance of Things Past (Modern Library Edition)

by Marcel Proust

Marcel Proust is generally considered the greatest French novelist of the twentieth century. His reputation, which derives almost exclusively from the importance of his multivolume novel Remembrance of Things Past, is that of a dazzling stylist, analytical thinker, and social observer. His novel is founded on his powers of meticulous recollection and his ability to shape those memories into a compelling—some might even say exhausting—account of one man's search for his past.

Members Only - Free

Book Group Meetings - Brown Bag Mystery Readers
Monday, December 08, 2014 - 12:00pm

Claire DeWitt and the Bohemian Highway

by Sara Gran

When Claire DeWitt's ex-boyfriend Paul Casablancas, a musician, is found dead in his Mission District house, Claire is on the case. Paul's wife and the police are sure Paul was killed for his valuable collection of vintage guitars. But Claire, the best detective in the world, has other ideas.

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Fiction You Wish You Had Read
Tuesday, December 16, 2014 - 12:00pm

Potpourri of Favorites

Our annual Potpourri of Favorites meeting is our members’ chance to share their favorite fiction titles from the previous year. Bring one or two of your favorite fiction books and be prepared to give a short synopsis of what makes the book a favorite of yours!

Members Only - Free
No registration required.
More information
No registration required.

Book Group Meetings - Literature in Brief - Short Stories
Tuesday, December 16, 2014 - 5:30pm

This Is How You Lose Her

by Junot Díaz

A Pulitzer Prize winner turns his prodigious talent to the haunting, impossible power of love. Hilarious and devastating, raucous and tender, these stories lay bare the infinite longing and inevitable weaknesses of our all-too-human hearts.

Members Only - Free